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Archive for the ‘Macro Photography’ Category

Greenfly giving birth

Posted by wildwatertv on June 15, 2010

Now this is a touching and tender scene for anyone who isn’t a gardener.  It’s a greenfly giving birth to one of many daughters on a rosebud. Within ten minutes there were several of these little beasts running around their mother.  She, meanwhile, just sat there eating throughout.  Taken using a zeiss luminar 25mm lens with the usual flash arrangement which picks up the colours being diffracted by the wings.  When I last looked, mother and daughter were doing well….


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Bryony tendril

Posted by wildwatertv on May 12, 2010

This fscinating thing is one of those little green tendrils that plants extend looking for things to hold on to.  They are tightly coiled and extremely highly developed.  This one is from a white bryony plant, and the coils are so evenly spaced they seem to be man-made.  Nature had the curly telephone line long before we did.

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Shield bug

Posted by wildwatertv on April 20, 2010

This fantastic creature is a Green shieldbug (Palomina Prasina), Order Hemiptera sub order Heteroptera Family Acanthosomidae. They have long sucking mouthparts but they also have a gland in their thorax between the first and second pair of legs which secretes a foul smelling liquid.  This gives them their other common name, stink bugs.

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crystalline rocks

Posted by wildwatertv on March 10, 2010

This is a weird sort of image, made possible by the art of a stonecutter.  It’s a rose quartz section, about 2mm thick, photographed by shining light through it.  What is produced is a sort of graphic crystalline magic.  This technique also creates an interesting three dimensional effect, due to the varying translucency of the rock section.  Not through a microscope, but 1;1 magnification with a Nikon Micro lens.

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Lyniphid spider in web

Posted by wildwatertv on November 3, 2009


This is a Lyniphid spider.  They are often called money spiders and live under a sort of carpet of web rather than on a classic orb.  It looks upside down because it is, almost permanently.  Those huge jaws grab the prey from below when it falls onto the web carpet.  there are many different species of Lyniphia, so this is a difficult one to identify clearly.  They are all small and fast.  Photographed using flash at about 6x magnification with a Nikon D300 and Zeiss Luminar.  All spiders are miracles of evolution and each is perfectly adapted to its own style of hunting.  The eyes in this genus are not well developed because they use the vibrations in the web to locate their prey.

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The face of a wasp

Posted by wildwatertv on October 16, 2009


This is a familiar summer face, the common wasp (Vespula vulgaris)  again on ivy.  This photograph shows the complex mouth-parts of the wasp.  These are almost like a plane or a spokeshave enclosed in powerful jaws and are used not only for feeding, but for scraping and chewing wood to form the paper used in nest-building.  Although they are a nuisance, wasps have a beauty all of their own.

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Bees have hairy eyes

Posted by wildwatertv on October 14, 2009



It’s clear that when you look at a bee that it’s a hairy sort of animal, but close up photography reveals a strange fact.  The eyes are covered with hairs too.  This might be to protect them from pollen, or for some other purpose.  These two specimens were feeding on ivy flowers, which produce a sort of sticky substance insects find irresistible.

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Compound eyes part one

Posted by wildwatertv on September 17, 2009

flyhorse 1flyhorse 2

This fly on a leaf was shot using a Zeiss Luminar.  The size of the animal was about 5mm.  The detail below shows the structure of an insect’s eye.  The honeycomb pattern varies from species to species, but this is a fine example of one of the more highly developed eyes in the insect kingdom.  Each segment of the eye can be thought of as a pixel, and the image the fly sees is dependent only on the number of facets it has available.  Simpler insects have far fewer.

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An Eye

Posted by wildwatertv on September 7, 2009

Emma's eye

This might seem an odd image to choose, but I love the simplicity of it.  It’s Emma’s eye, and although the vast majority of the image is out of focus it does convey a wonderful sense of anticipation….

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A couple of spiders..

Posted by wildwatertv on September 7, 2009

meta segment1

This spider is called Meta segmentata. They are very common this time of year, and if you look under leaves by an orb web you will often see them devouring something.  In this case it’s a fly.  Spiders digest prey by first wrapping them in silk and then injecting them with enzymes.  the resulting meal is more of a soup than a meat dish.


And this one is called Araneus Diadematus.  As with the meta they are very common in the autumn and can get to quite a size.  This one is female and still fairly small.  You can see that all spiders have eight eyes, though in some, such as the Lycosids (wolf spiders) two are far more pronounced than the rest.

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